Dinsoor Crises Modifier Case Study

BRCiS program is funded by FCDO and implemented by GREDO in Dinsoor and Baidoa districts of Bay Region GREDO is implementing SHARPII project which is community led initiative. Somalia. The project objective is to build resilient communities in Somalia.

Dinsoor district is geographically located about 120Kms to the south west of Baidoa district of Bay Region. This town is controlled by SWS government and was liberated in 2015 from ALSHABAB (AS) militants. And the security is maintained by federal government army with support of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Since the town was liberated from AS there were economic sanctions which restricted movement of people and commodities going out and coming into the main town. The prolonged sanctions posed major life and livelihood challenges to the society of Dinsoor. Through government effort on security and continued hope of business men, food and other commodities were being smuggled in to the town. These commodities were many times raided and destroyed by AS causing loss of millions of dollars and human lives as well.  In April 2020 increased sanctions, Covid 19 restrictions, clan conflict, below average rains and desert locust infestation were major issues affecting vulnerable households and communities.

In September 2020 AS economic sanctions increased, putting full ban on food and other materials into Dinsoor town/ or government-controlled areas.  This impacted the lives of most vulnerable individuals and households posing a major life-threatening situation affecting livelihoods and access to basic services such as food, education, water and health.

On 30th April 2020 GREDO conducted rapid humanitarian situation assessment and an alert report was shared with the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), SWS government and other actors. This was followed by rapid joint assessment by partners and Dinsoor local authority on the 13th and 14th of September 2020.  The assessment established that, dire food insecurity due to lack of purchasing power, increased malnutrition levels among children and PLWs, lack of health suppliers, lack of adequate health service provision and water shortage were major gaps informed by the assessment.

Late September 2020 data collection using BRCiS early warning early action (EWEA) dashboard showed alert indicators on below average rainfalls, reduced number of meals, increased moderate acute malnutrition (MAM) and severe acute malnutrition (SAM) levels, while alert indicators showed increased prices of water and staple food. Prices of staple food such as rice, maize, cowpea, sugar, sorghum, milk and vegetables increased rapidly to an exceptional level, making difficult for vulnerable households to buy food.

Activation of Crisis Modifier Early Action Intervention

Through the BRCiS crisis modifier response mechanism, GREDO coordinated with the consortium management unit to activate and scale-up early action using multipurpose cash-based assistance and safety net top ups. Three months response was planned covering Oct., Nov., and Dec, and was successfully approved by FCDO. In order to avert the impending catastrophic humanitarian situation, restore purchasing power of vulnerable households and improve access to basic needs such as food, 1232 households were identified and supported.

Among the beneficiaries 382 representing four participant communities were provided with 20usd safety net top ups, while 850 households from four area communities received 60usd MPCA for three consecutive months. Safety net (SFN) beneficiaries are beneficiaries engaged in BRCiS pilot safety net cash transfer intervention and it’s aimed to promote resilience through the provision of unconditional cash transfers that are regular, predictable and reliable over time.   While the original monthly payment for SFN beneficiaries was 20usd, crises modifier provided 20usd top up for three months in order to protect the resilience gains of households supported under safety net pilot.

Are there any lessons/key messages you wish to highlight as part of the Crisis Modifier Early Action Intervention?

The main lesson learnt is that, even though the militants imposed siege, the crises modifier cash injection significantly contributed to stabilizing the market. This is because when demand of food increased business dealers were able to work hard and bring in more goods. This in turn stabilizes the market and leads the market to function normal.

Beneficiary and Community targeting.

The beneficiaries were identified using community led targeting process which involves formation of beneficiary selection committees in all the communities targeted for the crises modifier cash response. Women, youth, traditional and religious leaders VRCs were involved. The rich selection committee brings on board a vast knowledge of situations and conditions of the vulnerable households in the selected communities and are supported by GREDO project staff and district level representative in order to ensure those most in need are targeted. Before the actual beneficiary registration, the selection criteria was shared and agreed with the village committees, community members and local authority through consultative meetings that were held in order to get their inputs and ensure their acceptance to the process. However, this enabled GREDO to reach those most needy vulnerable individuals from the target communities. Based on the community agreed criteria, a list of beneficiaries was developed and further reviewed through a community meeting. This helped to come up with a widely agreed final list of beneficiaries.

At community level most affected and marginalized communities were targeted and at household level, the focus was given to households with malnourished children, extremely poor households, households headed by persons living with disability or with chronic illness, female headed households and households with orphaned children.

 Key impacts of CM response.

  • Increased purchasing power of vulnerable households and increased access too household’s basic needs such as food, education, clothing and health.
  • Cash injection was felt in local market and business owners have realized improvement in the market functionality (Increased supply and demand).
  • Casual laborious were able to access labour opportunities, thus cash contributing economic wellbeing of indirect beneficiaries.
  • Increased availability of goods in the market due to increased demand-business owners worked hard to smuggle more food into the market and it was confirmed that the market is resuming its normal position gradually.
  • Cash received direct or indirectly have shown significant contribution to invest and rehabilitate of household assets such as latrines, shelter/housing etc.

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